clean, damp cloth and placed in a cool storage room until
you are ready to use them.
Keep the time between preparation and cooking as
short as possible.
Valuable vitamins are lost when
vegetables are soaked too long or are allowed to remain
at warm temperatures for several hours.
FROZEN VEGETABLES. Frozen vegetables
have the appearance and very nearly the flavor of fresh
vegetables. Like the dehydrated vegetables discussed
previously, they are easy to prepare; the precooking
tasks have been done. Frozen vegetables have been
cleaned and trimmed and are ready to use.
CANNED VEGETABLES. Vegetables that are
canned have been cooked in the container and need only
to be brought to the boiling temperature just before they
are served. Never boil a canned vegetable; always avoid
overheating or overcooking. The liquid from tamed
vegetables should be saved and used in soups, sauces,
or gravies. Follow the AFRS guidelines for heating
DRIED VEGETABLES. A variety of dried
vegetables are used in Navy messes. Dried beans and
peas are used in soups and entreés (supplemented with
meats such as ham, bacon, or ground beef as in chili con
came). Dried garlic is used as seasoning. Dried onions
are used extensively in salads and cooking.
DEHYDRATED VEGETABLES. Dehydrated
vegetables are now widely used and popular in Navy
messes. Their small weight and volume make them
convenient to store. They are easy to prepare. All the
precooking tasks associated with raw vegetables have
been done for you. They are peeled, diced, sliced, or
chopped, and ready to use. They eliminate waste and
ensure portion control.
Precooked potato granules, sliced raw potatoes, raw
cabbage, chopped onions, and green peppers are some
of the dehydrated vegetables used by the Navy. They
are reconstituted by adding a measured quantity of the
vegetable to a measured volume of water. The
temperature of the water will vary (lukewarm or cool)
with the specific dehydrated vegetable being
reconstituted as will the length of time required for the
reconstituting process (15 to 30 minutes). Recipes in
the Q (vegetable) section of the AFRS give more
detailed instructions for reconstituting dehydrated
Vegetables may be baked or sauteéd they may be
simmered or steamed; they may be served with butter or
covered with an appropriate sauce; or, after they are
simmered or steamed, they may be creamed, mashed, or
The basic methods of cooking vegetables are
baking, steaming, and simmering.
SIMMERING. Vegetables are simmered in
water with seasonings in steam-jacketed kettles or
Vegetables will lose their fresh
appearance, flavor, and nutritive value if they are
STEAMING. Steaming is an excellent method of
cooking most fresh vegetables. It is faster than other
methods and helps to preserve the fresh appearance and
nutritive value of the vegetables. Follow the
manufacturers directions for cooking time and methods
for each kind of vegetable. Guidelines for steam
cooking are given in the AFRS.
BAKING. Cook the vegetables in dry heat in an
oven with the addition of little or no water. Dry baking
is usually limited to potatoes and squash.
OVEN FRYING. Some vegetables may be
parboiled and then placed in a well-greased roasting pan
in the oven to complete cooking. Hash browned and
home fried potatoes may be oven fried.
DEEP FAT FRYING AND PANFRYING.
Potatoes, onions, and other vegetables such as eggplant,
cauliflower, and okra may be french fried. Vegetables
that are deep fried and panfried should be tender and cut
into uniform size pieces.
Panfried vegetables are
cooked in a small amount of fat on top of the range.
Sautéing is another term for panfrying.
STIR-FRYING. Carrots, celery, cabbage, sweet
peppers, mushrooms, dried and green onions, broccoli,
and cauliflower may be stir-fried. Stir-frying is sautéing
in hot salad oil or shortening in progressive steps. The
cooked vegetables are crisp and crunchy in texture.
PROGRESSIVE VEGETABLE COOKERY.
To make sure a continuous supply of freshly cooked
vegetables is available on the serving line, cooking
periods must be staggered so that several small batches
of vegetables will be cooked one after another. This also
helps control waste because a new batch will be started
only if it is needed.
Short cooking time is best. Cook only a small
quantity of vegetables at a time. Vegetables must be